days; the S.D. of Marseille will bear its share of
responsibility for the 100,000 French Jews exterminated at Auschwitz!
According to the testimony of the militia arrested after the murder of
Victor Basch and his wife in Lyon, it was Moritz, in charge of S.S. operations
against the Maquis of the Ain, who commanded the detachment of S.S. who had
come with their French accomplices to arrest the president of the League for
the Rights of Man. The S.S. delivered the Basches to the militia, which
executed them at the side of a road.
We found a number of August
Moritzes in telephone directories of German cities, but not in Hanover, his
native city, where I went in October 1972. In Hamburg there were just two. On
February 8, 1973, I rang up, saying, "This is the City Register of Hanover. We
are working on statistics on the present location of our residents. Is this the
same Herr Moritz who was born in Hanover on February 11, 1913?
woman's voice: "Yes, that is my husband. He's right here."
That is all."
So we have located Moritz. Now we have to go to Hamburg,
and without delay. Indeed, Sunday will be a better day to reach Moritz than a
weekday; especially this coming Sunday above all others, when Moritz will be
celebrating his sixtieth birthday. How many of the Jews he sent to Drancy will
live to celebrate their sixtieth birthday? This confrontation with his bloody
past will at least spoil the joyful day he is anticipating.
cannot go, for early Monday morning I am to take the train to Toulouse where
"Presence of Israel" has asked me to speak, as well as at Agen. I find a
substitute, Peggy, a Hamburg journalist, the daughter of Polish Jews who died
at Auschwitz. Peggy has covered the trials of Nazi war criminals. The commando
unit that will leave Paris Saturday evening by train is thus reduced to two:
Julien Aubart and Serge.
Sunday about noon we
arrive in front of the Moritz residence in the middle of the Hamburg equivalent
of Pigalle, Sankt Pauli. Our guide is Peggy, accompanied by a photographer
friend. Moritz lives on the third floor of a modest building (Talstrasse 27
Tel. 719 32 30) . We ring. A woman opens the door a crack. Peggy explains that
we are French journalists who wish to question her